The Suicide Squad (2021)

The Suicide Squad
Director: James Gunn
Writer: James Gunn
Based on: various comic characters
Sequel to: Suicide Squad
Cast: Idris Elba, Margot Robbie, John Cena, Joel Kinnaman, Daniela Melchior, David Dastmalchian, Sylvester Stallone, Viola Davis, Peter Capaldi, Michael Rooker, Nathan Fillion, Jai Courtney, Flula Borg, Mayling Ng, Pete Davidson, Sean Gunn, Storm Reid, Alice Braga, Taika Waititi, Pom Klementieff
Part of: DC movies
Seen on: 9.8.2021

The Suicide Squad has some new recruits and a new mission on Corto Maltese. Instructed by Amanda Waller (Viola Davis), they are dropped off on the island that recently saw a regime change. And so, Bloodsport (Idris Elba), Peacemaker (John Cena), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), RIck Flag (Joel Kinnaman), Ratcatcher 2 (Daniela Melchior), Polka-Dot Man (David Dastmalchian) and King Shark (Sylvester Stallone) find themselves on different paths to the island capital to gain control of a secret weapon in a stronghold in the city.

I was debating with myself whether I actually wanted to go see The Suicide Squad, given that Suicide Squad wasn’t good (to put it mildly), but ultimately my love for the cast won out. And I’m glad it did – The Suicide Squad is a whole lot of fun.

The film poster showing Bloodsport (Idris Elba), Peacemaker (John Cena), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), RIck Flag (Joel Kinnaman), Ratcatcher 2 (Daniela Melchior), Polka-Dot Man (David Dastmalchian) and King Shark (Sylvester Stallone) in a star-like formation, surrounded by explosions.

I am not that world’s biggest fan of James Gunn. I’m one of the people who didn’t think that Guardians of the Galaxy was all that great, and his problematic tweets only made things worse as they highlighted a certain juvenile, white male point of view that was what kept me at a distance from him in the first place. But in The Suicide Squad, he hit the right tone for me for the most part, and I really could laugh my ass off during the film.

That’s also thanks to the wonderful cast and the great chemistry they have with each other. You quickly start genuinely caring for the characters (well, all but Peacemaker, I have to say, but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t funny), and the way they grow together was really well done. Margot Robbie’s Harley continues to be a scene-stealer, but I also liked Elba’s Bloodsport a lot, and Rick Flag continues to grow on me. Ratcatcher 2 carried a lot of emotional weight for the group and Melchior makes that work, too.

Polka-Dot Man (David Dastmalchian), Peacemaker (John Cena), Bloodsport (Idris Elba) and Ratcatcher 2 (Daniela Melchior) in a camp in the jungle.

There is a chaotic irreverence to the film that goes well with the gore the film doles out the entire time. (Is it just me or did Corona make us bloodthirstier? It feels like every second movie I see is gorier than I thought it would be. Not that I mind.) And yet, there are honestly emotional moments, too.

Narratively, the film does have a couple of weak spots, starting with the very set-up at the beginning that would have needed a little more interaction between Amanda Waller and Rick Flag to make sense. And I would have liked it if the film had thought a little more about the political implications – it does touch on interesting points here and there, but especially the international politics angle would have deserved a bit more exploration.

Then again, that’s not the kind of film it is. But it is the kind of film that is absolutely entertaining.

Polka-Dot Man (David Dastmalchian), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) and Bloodsport (Idris Elba) running in a building that is collapsing.

Summarizing: definitely fun.

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